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Chatty, adrift in an ocean of ne’er-do-wells


OUR Man in Westminster, Sir Charles ‘Chatty’ Chatterton MP, is committed to truth, transparency and decency. He is happy for TCW Defending Freedom to publish his correspondence to his constituents. Sir Charles has represented the people of Greater Tittleham since entering Parliament in 1966. He has recently accepted the post of Assistant Under Secretary of State at the Department of Health.

My Dear Friends

I apologise for writing to you again so soon, but you may have noticed the turmoil which has engulfed the Government. I am as baffled as you are about what has caused the madness that seems to have possessed many of my colleagues. Perhaps it has something to do with all those experimental injections they have been so keen to promote.

For more years than I care to remember, interference from Central Office has foisted upon the electorate a large number of inadequate individuals who would have been better employed in menial work in deep sewers, or scavengers on the shore of some remote island. The powers that be deliberately avoided selecting true conservatives such as my cousin Sir Hercules Chatterton-Arbuthnot, and my good friend and neighbour, the Honourable Giles St Clair-Grosvenor. Arguably, it was sensible to accommodate a few Steves from Stoke and Daves from Dudley, but the party must rue the day it turned its back on the country’s people of calibre and natural leaders.

My father Sir Horacio, your deeply revered erstwhile Member of Parliament, gave me some valuable advice shortly before I succeeded him as your representative. How I wish that those selecting our candidates had followed his counsel. Papa was a close aide to Sir Alec Douglas-Home, and for several months in 1963 they had been working on proposals to improve the voting system by excluding various types of nation-hating, socialist riff-raff from the electoral register. 

Had it not been for that Prime Minister’s narrow defeat in 1964, the country would not be in the pickle with which we are now sadly familiar. 

Sir Alec was defeated by the shifty, devious Wilson fella, and their beneficial reforms could not be put into place. However, I clearly remember the day my father pointed out the chubby Yorkshireman from the Strangers’ Gallery and told me that you could tell a person’s character by the cut of his jib and the look in his eyes. From that day to this I have followed his wise exhortation.

There can be no doubt that the eyes are the mirrors of the soul.

Our departing Prime Minister, the unfortunate Truss woman, for example, gives the impression of a lost toddler looking for her mother in a large department store. When the unappealing new Chancellor, Hunt, speaks, he appears to be taking instructions from a sinister ethereal entity with which he is constantly seeking to connect. Of the likely candidates for the vacancy in Downing Street, Sunak looks as though his nanny has just brought him another trifle, and Mordaunt wanders around seemingly trying to solve Fermat’s Last Theorem. The burly chappie called Wallace, whom some see as a unifying candidate, has the demeanour of someone who regularly menaces his grandmother for pocket money. 

The previous PMs Cameron and Blair are clearly devious chancers whom one might have encountered selling rusting motor vehicles to confused old people. As for my new boss Coffey, her drooping eyes indicate to me that she is permanently in need of a siesta. 

The other side of the House is no better. I notice the vacant look displayed by Starmer, desperate as he is to discover a policy of some sort. The lights are on but there is no one home. I note the confusion and panic in the eyes of his sidekick Rayner as she attempts to make sense of any word that contains more than two syllables, and I see the smug malevolence displayed by the Green woman from Brighton.

Nowhere in Westminster do I find the clear, resolute but sympathetic eyes I see around me in here in Tittleham.

Talking of which, it was a pleasure to see so many of you at my surgery in the Drunken Ferret last week. The assembled throng clearly appreciated my suggestions about ways to prevent city dwellers from purchasing property in the area. My secretary Catherine duly noted concerns about the fate of the escaped puma, the potholes on the B7492, and the sighting of what appeared to be a hippie in Tittleham under Marsh. 

Later in the evening it was a pleasure to join the assembly for a flagon or two of the excellent Badger’s Snout IPA, and the exuberant singing of John Barleycorn and We Plough the Fields and Scatter.

I do apologise for Lady Veronica’s insistence on bringing her euphonium, but I am sure you will agree that it added a new dimension to the songs.

Despite the occasional drone strike, our charming Ukrainian refugee Zlata is having a tremendous time on holiday in Kiev and hopes to return to Tittleham Hall in time to help with the catering at the next Warm Wednesday.

Your humble servant 

Sir Charles Chatterton MP

Tittleham Hall

Middle Tittleham

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John Ellwood
John Ellwood
John is the father of four beautiful girls. He is, thankfully, not knowingly related to Tobias Ellwood. ‘My Dear Friends . . . ’ a compilation of many of John’s contributions to TCW Defending Freedom is available in paperback and on Kindle.

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